"Today, I come to you with a renewed vision for Akwa Ibom , a vision that is encapsulated in my burning passion to serve my people, to further transform Akwa Ibom State and uplift the living standards across the entire state."
Those were the lines that struck the core cord of the declaration speech of Gov. Udom Emmanuel before the 2015 Gubernatorial polls. It paved the path and a road-map design to the race towards the Hilltop Mansion 2015.
Akwa Ibom people gladly and with utmost celebration gave him the key to that door through their overwhelming votes on April 11, 2015. A man of positive history, he was born on an “11th”, he got his Divine Mandate on an “11th”; Governor Udom Emmanuel used his intimidating credentials to stencil and engrave his name in the hearts of Akwa Ibom people, making him not just the right man but one who has also come at the right time. He indeed has come to bridge the gap between gaudy wealth and crushing poverty, believing strongly that the principal purpose of government is the welfare of the people.
Udom Gabriel Emmanuel has come with a background of competence. With industrialization, occupying the front seat of his campaign, Akwa Ibom in Emmanuel’s hands will implicate the wonders of the Asian Tigers, and become a manufacturing economy.
Whether anybody likes it or yes! One thing that stood out as a boost to the successful emergence of the new governor is the overwhelming and gut driven success story impacted by the just ended tenure of Senator Godswill Akpabio.
With his immeasurable and lofty achievements, our people were convinced that in eight years the administration of former Governor Akpabio had performed so creditably well that they were prepared to support the Peoples Democratic Party in their choice of a man who will come to sustain all the developmental efforts of the state through a superior performance index.
With a previous toga of uncommon transformation, Udom Emmanuel with his seasoned and well vested clout in product management of corporate resources has sure fine-tuned the direction of statesmanship and redefines the concept of good governance.
The party’s decision to zone the governorship race to Eket Senatorial District as a means of inclusion, equity and justice provided no shortcoming with the flagship of Udom Emmanuel.
It is a square peg in the square hole and further portends the good-yield that awaits this administration. Akwa Ibom State has indeed become the infrastructural leader among Nigeria’s comity of states.
These gains and momentum of development must be sustained and built-upon. All the basic infrastructures that the state needs to take a leap into the league of highly industrialized states have been put in place.
Akwa Ibom is ready for the next stage of development. What will make the difference is leadership that can seize opportunity and build on this great foundation.
Since Governor Udom Emmanuel’s assumption of office, a lot has been done in various spheres of governance to showcase and substantiate all genuine and committed strides to move the state to greater and spirited status.
Governor Udom Emmanuel is an unlikely revolutionary who within a short time is building on the solid work of his illustrious predecessors. His is an effective manager, a chartered accountant and one of the most experienced bankers in the country rising to the apex of his profession.
Interestingly, his adventure into the political arena has similar professional attributes of discipline, respect for authority, institutional rigidity, and hierarchical bureaucratic codes.
Judging from his outstanding attributes and the new lease of life at the St Luke's Hospital, Anua as well as the Peacock Paints in Etinan, the Governor perhaps is the most active of the public officers elected on the platform of the PDP in Nigeria.
For me it is a painstaking scorecard and it came at a time worthy and due to assess a man whose desire to contribute to the growth and development of our dear state beckons.
Aside the various ground breaking of industrial concerns and inauguration of projects across the nooks and crannies of the state, Udom Emmanuel has awarded and mobilized both local and international experts and contractors to commence the rehabilitation of strategic roads and erosion control projects aimed at easing the inconveniences of Akwa Ibomites as they traverse in their daily living transactions unhindered.
The name Emmanuel means “GOD WITH US” and means different things to different people in our clime. Some erroneously claim he is brought in to play a script of a certain cabal, while others say he is stooge.
However, the vast majority of Akwa Ibom people regard this gentle and meek lamp as a Divine gift that can pull the state back from the precipice of self-inflicted destruction to which some persons are blindly pushing it into.
In Nigeria quite often there is friction and bickering between the various arms of government leading to the retardation of governance.
The administration of Gov. Udom Emmanuel has beyond reasonable doubts since inception foster development, and maintain a good working relationship with both the legislative and the judiciary arms of Government in the state, as well as ensuring an effective local Government Administration for grassroot development, mobilization and empowerment.
The administration has made a vow to transform the economy of Akwa Ibom State through industrialization and sustainable public-private sector initiative, thereby opening up more opportunities for growth and improved living standards among the people.
Like a breath of fresh air the Governor has clearly pursued the task of Rural Development and integration with all vigour which would bring the benefits and dividends of our democratic governance closer home, and provide the basic amenities of like to all.
Most significant in the live and times of the state, Udom Emmanuel rolled out an optimum state driven philosophy on the 23rd of September, 2015 at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium as the state turned 28. It was the launch of the moral and spiritual rebirth ideology aimed at re-positioning and re-branding the minds of Akwa Ibomites to contributing towards the advancement of statehood.
The Dakkada (Akwa Ibom Arise) is a boost to an already founded greatness in our existence. A clarion call to all Akwa Ibom sons and daughters across the globe to unify and strategize in achieving life’s zenith despite thier differences.
Udom Emmanuel now occupies the driver’s seat and he is sure moving and steering the ship of statehood on course. He passes as a true professional with over 25 years experience in Nigeria’s financial services sector, creating and managing wealth.
As a young Ibibio man without a godfather, he rose through the ranks in one of Nigeria’s leading and most dynamic financial institutions, where he served with loyalty, dedication and integrity.
A landmark and bench mark sailing point in Zenith Bank as Executive Director, Corporate Finance and Advisory Services with an unblemished record.
During his career at the bank, he handled at various times portfolios relating to research, strategy, financial controls, and managed relationships in the telecoms, conglomerates, multilateral organizations and private banking.
With all the aforementioned rolls of achievement and height attained, the business of governance sure is a smooth sail in his hands and for now he calls the shots.
He came with golden words of hope and today, that hope is hatched for the greatness and sustainable development of Akwa Ibom State.
Udom has become a beacon of hope for the people, a pillar and a clear manifestation that Akwa Ibom people made the right choice.
Whether you hate him or love him, what matters most is that Mr. Emmanuel is rocking steady and the frequency of governance is on the right dial.
For the few months the Governor has been in office, he has scored high-points capable of securing the people’s confidence. It is a simple and compelling story of immeasurable success.
[+] Pat Reuben is a Public Affairs Analyst and writes in from Uyo.